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In Loving Memory of Mr. Sam Smith

 In Loving Memory of Mr. Sam Smith


I had some bad news this morning from a good friend that read like this:

“I just received a call from Sam Smith(‘s) Son Marshall .. Regrettably Samuel (Sam) Smith died this morning… I will provide details as they come available

The news hit me like the blast that injured me in the Middle East. It came on a day that some people who were close to me were having a big day and week.  My response to them was this, “You, Monica & Angela have big days today. Sam shared and poured a lot of him into us. Physically he will not be with us but he will still be seen through us.”

Mr. Sam Smith, who many called just Sam, is the man who started the Gathering. He was the only Black book store owner in the state for a while. He got more Black people on fire department than any other locally. He is the man I admired more than any other I met. This in no way is all that Mr. Smith accomplished during his time with us but merely a snapshot.  We affectionately referred to him as, The Mayor of the Bistro and the Oracle of Las Vegas.  As I regain my composure I may share more later.

When I think of things I have done inspired by him and what wouldn’t have happened in my life had he not been in it, I see such a void. My life is fuller because of him and the community has been enriched by him through me. He said, “we should always be excellent.”

When I am in the community my goal was to be excellent so they could see his excellence in me. It was a way to show a living respect to him and also for his approval. I admired him and wanted his approval probably more than any other man I have known.

I shared my lost with a very close military buddy. He gave me his condolences and then he asked, “Who is Sam Smith?”  I simply said, “He was the guy I would have wanted to call me son.”

To Mr. Smith’s family, please accept my deepest and sincerest condolences for your lost.  I ask that God will comfort you during this time of your sorrow and strengthen you to continue onward.  Thank you for sharing your Father with me and so many others…Amen!


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